Updated from 4:05 p.m. EDTA late run lifted blue chips to respectable gains for the second straight session Monday, this time amid a whirlwind of news concerning several Dow components. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 60.76 points, or 0.59%, to 10,348.10. The S&P 500 rose 3.53 points, or 0.3%, at 1190.10. The Nasdaq Composite added 5.47 points, or 0.26%, to 2070.30. The 10-year Treasury was down 2/32 in price to yield 4.49%, and the dollar was higher against the yen and euro. "I am modestly encouraged we finished stronger," said Al Goldman, chief market strategist with A.G. Edwards. "So far, October has been awful. We've had a gloomy mood in the market, and buyers should be prepped. It's time for this market to pick up the ball." For the month, the Dow is down 2.1%, the S&P 500 has lost 3.2%, and the Nasdaq has fallen 3.8%. About 1.52 billion shares traded on the New York Stock Exchange, with advancers beating decliners by a 6-to-5 margin. Trading volume on the Nasdaq was 1.28 billion shares, with advancers outpacing decliners 8 to 7. Energy futures were stronger as Tropical Storm Wilma took shape 175 miles south of the Cayman Islands with sustained winds of about 40 mph. Oil for November delivery closed up $1.73 to $64.36 a barrel, its highest level in two weeks. Gasoline futures added 6 cents to $1.81 a gallon and natural gas rose 63 cents to $13.85 per million BTUs. "A bottom may be in place, but the bulls still have their work cut out for them as all the major averages remain below their falling 10-day moving averages," said Ken Tower, chief market strategist with CyberTrader. "Last week's decline damaged the longer-term trend, but the bulls haven't fully given up the ghost yet." The Dow was paced by shares of General Motors ( GM), which rose even after the company posted a third-quarter loss of $1.6 billion, or $2.89 a share, compared with a profit of $315 million, or 56 cents a share, a year ago. Analysts on average expected a loss of 87 cents a share. The world's biggest automaker also announced a tentative agreement with the United Auto Workers on health care and pension concessions, which is expected to save it about $1 billion a year. It's also exploring the sale of its financing unit, GMAC. GM was up $2.11, or 7.5%, to close at $30.09.
Altria ( MO) was another of the Dow's best gainers after the Supreme Court rejected a government appeal that attempted to reinstate a $280 billion racketeering penalty against cigarette makers. Altria added $4.30, or 6.1%, to $74.96. Citigroup ( C) said its third-quarter earnings rose to $7.14 billion, or $1.38 a share, lifted by various one-time gains. On a continuing basis, earnings fell 1% to about $5 billion, or 97 cents a share. Revenue jumped 15% from a year ago to $18.74 billion. Citigroup lost 23 cents, or 0.5%, to $44.81. Stronger sectors Monday included energy, automotive, semiconductors and utilities. Biotech, health care, transportation and banks were among the laggards. In other earnings, Wachovia ( WB) posted third-quarter earnings of $1.67 billion, or $1.06 a share, up 32% from $1.26 billion, or 96 cents, a year earlier. Excluding expenses, Wachovia would have earned $1.09 a share. Revenue rose 19% to $7 billion. The Thomson First Call consensus was for earnings of $1.07 a share on revenue of $6.46 billion. The stock climbed 27 cents, or 0.6%, to $48.12. After the bell Monday, IBM ( IBM) posted third-quarter earnings of $1.52 billion, or 94 cents a share, vs. $1.55 billion, or 92 cents a share, a year ago. Results included a 32-cent-a-share tax charge from a repatriation, which would have put EPS at $1.26. Revenue for the quarter was $21.5 billion, down from $23.4 billion a year earlier. Analysts expected IBM to post a profit of $1.13 a share on revenue of $20.5 billion. The stock finished up 24 cents, or 0.3%, to $82.59. Saks ( SKS) reported second-quarter earnings of $8.2 million, or 6 cents a share, compared with a loss of $25.3 million, or 18 cents a share, a year ago. The latest quarter included a net gain of $57 million, or 40 cents a share, related to an asset sale and expenses from investigations by an audit committee. Saks rose 33 cents, or 2%, to $16.93. Two toymakers reported worse-than-expected results. Hasbro ( HAS) said third-quarter earnings rose 4% to $92.1 million, or 47 cents a share, missing estimates on a $9 million revenue shortfall. Hasbro was up 7 cents, or 0.4%, to finish at $18.79. Mattel ( MAT) saw earnings slide 12% to $225.3 million, or 55 cents a share, missing estimates by 6 cents a share. The company said sales improvement in most of its lines was offset by declines in its Barbie franchise. Mattel fell 72 cents, or 4.5%, to $15.23.
Shares of Krispy Kreme Doughnuts ( KKD) were falling after the company said its franchisee partner Freedom Rings LLC filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. Krispy Kreme will provide funding for Freedom Rings during the restructuring. The stock dropped 26 cents, or 5.4%, to $4.60. Newell Rubbermaid ( NWL) said Chief Executive Joseph Galli has resigned by mutual agreement with the board. Mark Ketchum will serve as interim executive officer until a permanent replacement is found. The company also reaffirmed third-quarter and full-year earnings. Newell Rubbermaid gained $1.89, or 8.7%, to $23.73. Both Elan ( ELN) and Biogen Idec ( BIIB) were trading higher after the two pharmaceutical companies said no new cases of a rare brain disease were found from the use of the suspended MS drug Tysabri. Elan rose 15 cents, or 1.9%, to $8.25 while Biogen added 61 cents, or 1.6%, to $38.63. Lehman Brothers upgraded retailer Pier 1 Imports ( PIR) to equal-weight from underweight, believing that negative sentiment surrounding the stock has already been priced in. The firm also set a stock price target of $11 and said it remained cautious entering a challenging holiday season. Pier 1 was higher by 36 cents, or 3.4%, to close at $10.93. On the economic front, the New York Federal Reserve's Empire State Manufacturing Index unexpectedly fell to a reading of 12.1 in October from a revised 15.6 in September. Economists anticipated an increase to 18. Still, readings above zero indicate expansion. Overseas markets were mixed. In Europe, London's FTSE 100 finished up 0.2% at 5287, while Germany's Xetra DAX was adding 0.1% to 4979. In Asia, Japan's Nikkei lost 0.2% overnight to 13,421 while Hong Kong's Hang Seng shed 0.9% to 14,486. To view Gregg Greenberg's video take on today's market,
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